community-level efforts to reduce heart disease, cancer, stroke, and diabetes, along with other chronic diseases. Though promoting healthy lifestyles among population groups with the greatest burden of these chronic conditions, the grants aim to help improve health, reduce health disparities and control health care spending. In total, 61 states and communities have been awarded the grants. Included in that list are 15 southern states and communities, a fact that is not surprising as this area has the highest rates of obesity and cardiovascular disease. South Carolina DHEC was awarded over $4.6 million, distribution of which is being facilitated by Eat Smart Move More's Healthy SC Initiative. Along with programs to curb smoking and improve diet, the grants are also going toward biking and walking infrastructure with the goal of getting South Carolinians more active. These projects are all still in the early planning stages, but here is a preliminary list:
- Hampton County will be developing a comprehensive trail and walking plan as part of a long term goal to implement complete streets principles.
- Berkeley County will be incorporating signage on the Goose Creek Trail to promote connectivity to schools, neighborhoods, and public places along the trail.
- Spartanburg County plans to use the funds for trail development.
- York County is working on a trails and greenway master plan and is working to connect schools through Safe Routes to School.
- Chesterfield and Darlington Counties will be doing an assessment at first to determine what towns will be targeted for trail development throughout several small communities.
- Oconee County is working on community planning but will also be working on trail signage within the town of Westminster. They want to connect their recreation facility, baseball parks, and farmers market, located in the town square.